2019 is here. A new year. A fresh start to your language learning season. Millions have made their new year resolutions, but gave up after a month. What about you?
Have you specifically set your goals to learn a new language this new year? Or have you been frustrated that you are just like the majority of people who would give up mastering a language even at the least conversational level?
As the new year sets in, you may want to evaluate your commitment to your goal of learning a new language, and then find better ways to fulfill that goal this 2019. I remembered the times when I had made the same mistakes each year, some time ago, when I told myself to learn a new language but never learned it. I did not take action, nor create my own schedule and prioritize my learning.
These are three of the many excuses that we tend to give ourselves, and I was guilty of them too.
Excuse #1 "I had no money"
I thought I had no money. That was what I told myself since I believed I do not have the money to learn a new language when I was a teenage student. I was not aware that this was a belief system that did not do me a very good favour back then. If you are feeling the same way as I did back then, there are ways to fund yourself if you are truly passionate about this. You can borrow from people you trust, or save enough for the lesson, or learn directly from language podcasts available on the Internet. The third option seems to be the cheaper alternative.
"I have no money" was more of a rant and excuse than a fact that I could have made the effort to save up for my language courses.
Lesson learned: It is not what you do not have that stops you from achieving your goals. It is the self-defeating language you say to yourself that hinders you from success.
Excuse #2 "I had no time"
I thought I had no time. That was what I believed back then as a young adult because it did not came under my priority at all. Had it been my top priority to learn a new language out of fun or interest, I would have set aside the time to learn it. But I did not. Another reason was due to my lower self-esteem back then when I thought I was not good enough for anything. Such negative and erroneous belief system hindered me from achieving my language learning goals.
If you can relate to this, start setting aside the time because time will not wait for you. A year has passed once again, and the new year has just arrived. What are you going to do about it?
Lesson learned: The fastest way to learn a foreign language is to get started and stay committed. You cannot master anything without committing your time in it.
Excuse #3 "It was too difficult"
So I tried to learn a new language all by myself but failed miserably. Then, I registered for a class but failed to commit my time to mastering it. It was simply too difficult to learn a new language. With new grammar rules, new words, and new ways of speaking a language, I had a hard time remembering those or processing a new language that I have learned. So I struggled to learn the new language and in the end, I gave up. Just like many others. If you can related to this, do know that you are unconsciously telling yourself that "you cannot do it" and "it is too difficult". Guess what? You will never master that language, ever!
If you ever want to know what it takes to learn a new language and master it, you got to stop giving yourself excuses. This also applies to every other areas of your life.
Lesson learned: One excuse will lead to another excuse. As long as you keep harnessing self-defeating thoughts, you will never finish what you intend to accomplish.
One valuable lesson I learned about mastering a language, is that it takes joy, commitment, and action to learn a new language.
First, you got to find interest in learning. Having that joy to learn something you like gives you a boost in your motivation to do more and learn more.
Second, committing yourself to a consistent routine of learning a new language is the only way to master the language. Practice makes perfect. Practice makes proficient. To be proficient in the language you are learning, you need to set a schedule for yourself and commit your time to learn. Unfortunately, there is no other shortcuts.
Thirdly, taking action is the next step in your journey in learning a new language. Taking action here means that you need to start speaking to natives and practice conversing in the new language with others who are speaking it as well. One way is to start a foreign language study group to practice and apply what you learn, or else, your efforts will be in vain.
It is time to find back that joy, make the commitment, and take massive action to get started on learning a new language this year. Subscribe to support my blog for my weekly entries, and follow me on Pinterest for more language learning ideas and tips.
Happy New Year!